by Lisa M. Hendey | Source:
As a busy wife and mother, I frequently lament my lack of
consistent prayer time. I recently had a great conversation with a sixty-something year old
grandmother, who shared with me about her Morning Prayer ritual. She described the corner nook in
her bedroom where a cozy, overstuffed chair welcomed her each morning for her sunrise meditation.
Tea in hand, she greets each day with an hour long session of spiritual reading, silent meditation
and prayer. Her children are grown and her morning hours are her own to plan - she prioritizes her
prayer time at the beginning of each new day.
Despite my best efforts, I must confess to
frequently neglecting a long period of prayer and meditation each morning. That time all too often
gets eaten up by parental duties and work, as I race to complete the multitude of tasks that litter
a Mom's daily "to do" list in the limited hours of each day. There never seems to be
enough time – intellectually and spiritually I know that prayer is tantamount to what I
consider to be a “good day” – it is the key ingredient to my existence. But unlike
my woman friend and her cozy morning ritual, my prayers seem to happen more often “on the
fly”. I call on God frequently each day, but rarely from the seat of a chair. More often
it’s in a parking lot, a supermarket, aside a sports field, or even while I’m brushing
my teeth. I’ve long been concerned about making these prayers “count”, about
making them substantive, rather than simply plaintive.
A new book out from award winning
author Barbara Bartocci has breathed fresh air and energy in to my prayer life. In Grace on the
Go: 101 Quick Ways to Pray
(Morehouse Publishing, paperback, 98 pages, May 2006), Bartocci
acknowledges life’s frantic pace and offers her readers support and encouragement for making
active, frequent prayer a part of their lives. In the beginning of the book, Bartocci describes her
own frustration over trying to lead a truly spiritual life. With the following words, Bartocci hits
at the heart of what, in my book, makes her Grace on the Go
“And I realized that “living spiritually” is not something that exists out
there. It’s a commitment to make our lives – as they unfold – a gift to
God.”Grace on the Go: 101 Quick Ways to Pray
is not like other tomes on
prayer I’ve seen – it’s designed to be read in small bits. From its diminutive 2.6
ounce design to its format of being written in small segments, the book lends itself to any active
life. Tuck it into your purse or diaper bag. Slip it into the front zipper pocket of your organizer.
Set it in the glove compartment or cup holder of your car. Then pick it up and dive in. It
doesn’t matter which page you land on when you open the book – you’ll find
immediate inspiration and motivation. I’ve been enjoying and frequently reading it during my
daily activities and have found it to be a wonderful spiritual resource.
In the closing
pages of the book, Barbara Bartocci references Mother Theresa's statement that the busier her life
became, the greater her need for prayer. The same holds true for you and I - grace comes in finding
moments each day, no matter where life puts us, to turn our hearts to God.
information on Grace on the Go: 101 Quick Ways to Pray